Tigers’ designated hitter Victor Martinez is done for the season, the team confirmed Saturday. He’ll undergo chronic ablation surgery to repair the tissue in his heart that is causing an irregular heartbeat. Martinez was placed on the 10-day disabled list last Sunday following an episode that required hospitalization. It was his second stint on the DL due to heart issues.
The good news? While heart surgery can’t exactly be classified as a minor procedure, the recovery timetable for this treatment is expected to be relatively short. Comments from team manager Brad Ausmus suggested that Martinez won’t suffer long-term effects from the surgery and doesn’t appear to be contemplating retirement in the near future. He should be eligible to return to the team again in the spring, barring any unforeseen complications.
Martinez, 38, finished his 2017 run with a .255/.324/.372 batting line, 10 home runs and 47 RBI through 435 plate appearances. This is the first major medical issue the veteran slugger has dealt with since undergoing hernia surgery during the 2016 offseason. Per MLB.com’s Jason Beck, the Tigers will place Martinez on the 60-day disabled list on Sunday to clear roster space for right-handed prospect Artie Lewicki.